How We Grow Through What We Go Through: Self-Compassion Practices for Post-Traumatic Growth (Paperback)
Turn your everyday experiences into a source of strength with the easy-to-learn practices in this uplifting guide to post-traumatic growth.
Trauma pervades every aspect of our lives, particularly in recent years between climate change, social justice issues, the coronavirus pandemic, and more. But the truth is that post-traumatic growth, rather than post-traumatic stress, is not only possible but probable. In this book, you’ll discover the conditions and compassionate practices that make growth and resilience possible, including:
• How to regulate your nervous system by regulating your breath and body
• Trauma-informed self-compassion practices that make you more resilient to the world around you
• Skills to set boundaries to aid in your healing
• Dozens of other ways to turn your difficult experiences toward growth
Simple and to the point, each chapter offers practices, self-assessments, enlightening science facts, and advice for the real world—perfect for reading a page or two after an exhausting day or sharing with others when they need a lift.
No one gets a pass from life’s challenges. The good news is, we are hardwired to turn them into a source of strength. Turn to this book anytime you need to find out How We Grow Through What We Go Through.
“feels like a personal therapy session, with its conversational tone and examples about relatable experiences from Willard’s previous clients.” —Library Journal
“This is a straightforward, unpretentious guidebook for anyone looking to understand their trauma and how science-backed mindfulness practices can help us open our hearts to both ourselves and others in order to heal.” —Mindful
“…a user friendly, practical guide..” that is “well-researched and packed with simple exercises and thought-provoking questions…” —New York Journal of Books
“Chris Willard’s latest book offers a straightforward yet science-based guide to recovery and healing, from the individual to the collective.” —Emma Seppälä, PhD, Yale psychologist and author of The Happiness Track
“Dr. Willard has written an accessible book that gives beautiful context to the complexities of what happens inside of our bodies and in our relationships with one another when we undergo the experience of rupture and trauma, both individually and collectively. He lays out a compassionate road map for how we might find growth and the reemergence of possibility through it all. During a time when people are desperately looking for a way to understand their own relationship to mental, emotional, and physical pain and how it is impacted by our intersectional identities so as to be empowered to heal themselves and the planet, this book will prove to be a very helpful guide and resource to help us restore our capacity to treat ourselves and one another with loving-awareness.” —Sará King, PhD, neuroscientist, medical anthropologist, education philosopher, and founder of MindHeart Consulting
“A beacon in this era of our collective trauma that lights a way back into our bodies to reclaim our growth.” —Patrick Teahan, LICSW
“Dr. Willard’s Attend and Befriend approach to recovering from stress and trauma unfailingly normalizes the reader’s distress and skillfully encourages the recovery of innate capacities to experience enough safety inside one’s self to feel safe again in the world. What sets this book apart is the unpretentious way Dr. Willard walks with the reader step-by-step through the science and a workable sequence of practices that empower the reader to both heal through post-traumatic stress and heal into post-traumatic growth.
“I especially appreciate the author’s sensitivity to the realities of marginalized groups and the empathic sharing of so many stories of real people who show us that we, too, can learn to act our way into new feelings, new thoughts, new possibilities for our lives.” —Linda Graham, MFT, author of Resilience: Powerful Practices for Bouncing Back from Disappointment, Difficulty, and Even Disaster
“With love and rigor, Chris Willard has offered us an invaluable road map to working skillfully with trauma. The writing is thoughtful, the practices are accessible, and the message is exactly what we need: that we can survive (and even thrive) when faced with traumatic stress. Highly recommended!” —David Treleaven, PhD, author of Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness: Practices for Safe and Transformative Healing
“As we emerge from this global pandemic — into still more instability and trauma, we are beginning to understand the impact it has had on all of our bodies, hearts and minds. Collective healing is possible when we remember how deeply our lives are intertwined and that we belong to each other.” —Leslie Booker, co-author of Best Practices for Yoga in a Criminal Justice Setting
“Dr. Chris Willard provides a profound and restorative guide to the nonlinear journey that is healing from trauma. He offers nuanced language for understanding the impact of trauma on the nervous system and what it means to befriend, reset, and reregulate while honoring the many intersections and layers of our lived experience. Dr. Willard wrote this book in a way that is accessible, affirming, academic, and empowering while also making you feel like you are sitting with a friend over coffee and reflecting on your resilience. A one-of-a-kind resource that honors and centers the humanity of all those who have experienced trauma. A must-read for mental health and healing professionals inspired to integrate an understanding of neuroscience, mindfulness, self-compassion, and embodiment into their work with clients.” —Zahabiyah Yamasaki, MEd, RYT, author of Trauma-Informed Yoga for Survivors of Sexual Assault and forthcoming children’s book Your Joy is Beautiful
“The traumas and tragedies of life vary enormously. Some are intense but short-lived; others are ongoing and complex. While there are no magic solutions, this book offers many easy-to-understand insights into ways we can help ourselves to find the courage and wisdom to work with them. Dr. Willard outlines how trauma can affect us both psychologically and in our bodies, how to befriend ourselves rather than be harsh on ourself, to consider how one would help a friend in our situation and use that wisdom on ourselves, and, where possible, try to be the help of others rather than hide away. This book offers many ideas to help oneself in the dark times.” —Paul Gilbert, PhD, FBPsS, OBE